Kalua Pig

Kalua Pig

Daria Souvorova

4 hours
serves: 8-16 as main course, 16-24 with other dishes


Nico and I had the pleasure of being invited to a huge Luau while we were in Hawaii. There was so much food! Obviously, since this was a meal for 200, not everything was amazing, but I was so impressed by the chefs chopping up an entire pig as guests patiently waited. There were actually 5 or so entire pigs stationed around the beach.

I loved the experience and decided to cook a Kalua Pig for our Hawaiian-Japanese fusion dinner. I was not quite ready to dig a pit in my garden and roast an entire pig covered in banana leaves as was tradition, so I decided to cook a pork shoulder wrapped in banana leaves in my Dutch Oven. I added a bit of liquid smoke to give the sense of it being prepared on an open fire, and the pork was imbued with a wonderful flavor from roasting in the banana leaves.

Wow was this dish delicious! I was surprised myself since I read some contrary reviews for the oven method online. Roasting with some water allowed the meat to become incredibly succulent and the water turned into a beautiful serving broth after roasting for four hours with the pork.

Serve with some rice or Fresh Udon Noodles.


  • 5-5 1/2 pound pork butt or shoulder
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Hawaiian sea salt
  • 1 large frozen banana leaf
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon (or more to taste) liquid smoke


    1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
    2. Sprinkle sea salt all over roast and rub it in.
    3. Place on top of banana leaf. Wrap the leaf all around.
    4. Place the bundle into a large Dutch Oven or roasting pan with lid.
    5. Add water and liquid smoke.
    6. Bake for about 4 hours, checking every hour or so, until the meat falls of the bone.
    7. Cool a bit and shred in a large bowl, add the broth back in and taste. Reseason if necessary.
    8. Serve on banana leaves.
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